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Oregon Ducks Year in Review: Freshman Soar but Oregon Baseball’s Dreams of Nebraska Strike Out

Photo courtesy of dailyemerald.com

Oregon ended their 2016 baseball season with a 29-26 record, fueling their determination to prove their competitiveness and earn a spot in the 2017 College World Series. At the beginning of the 2017 season, the Ducks were picked to finish 8th in the Pac-12 preseason coaches poll, but as the season began, it became very evident that the identity of the team was unknown. Oregon welcomed many newcomers, one notable freshman being pitcher James Acuna who won his first game against Fresno State. The Ducks managed an eight game winning streak, which included a series sweep versus Santa Clara, but their streak was snapped with their loss to Cal in the series finale.

After Cal, Oregon fell short in the series finale to Washington and struggled in a 1-2 series with Utah. While offensively the Ducks continued to build, struggles were still alive through the remainder of conference games, including their series with Arizona, Stanford, Arizona State, Oregon State, Washington State, USC and UCLA. Oregon finished with a 12-18 conference record and a 30-25 overall record, but Coach Horton earned his 300th win as the head coach of Oregon Baseball, along with his 800th career victory as a Division I coach.

During the draft, junior left-hander David Peterson became Oregon’s first player drafted in the first round since 2011 when the New York Mets picked him up. Catcher Tim Susnara was also drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks on day two of the Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft in the 8th round as the 232nd overall pick. Along with Peterson and Susnara, pitcher Brac Warren was drafted by the San Francisco Giants on day three of the draft in the 17th round with the 516th overall pick.